I'm waiting on a video to upload to YouTube - always a scary process - and figured I'd kill some time by typing my usual brand of nonsense. Who doesn't watch the Olympics and blog at 12:20 AM?
Why is uploading a video to YouTube scary? It's like when you grab your phone, see that it has like 30% battery, you think to yourself "I should be OK for a little while", and then the first time you touch the screen the battery immediately dies and the phone is useless. Uploading videos to YouTube is like that; I upload straight from my video editing software - which doesn't allow me to fill in all the video information (description, keywords, thumbnail image, etc.) - and sometimes when it says there's 30 minutes of upload time left, it really means seconds and the video sits out there on the internet, looking extra amateur, until I realize that it's live and I can fill in some blanks. So...maybe not scary so much as a bit of a guessing game I never seem to win.
I'm only uploading a 5-minute video, but it was challenging to film nevertheless. I haven't put one together in maybe 6 months, so I was definitely a little rusty. I wanted to do a little bit of on-camera narration, but my beard whiskers are at a length where they're in the infancy of fro-ing out, and talking for any length of time above and beyond about 4 seconds means that a wayward whisker will invariably curl itself up into a nostril and tickle me like that's its job.
Uh oh. YouTube says it's received my video - not live yet - but that means I have an unknown amount of time to make it look like I've done this before. Hang on...
...that was close.
Anyhow, talking directly into a camera is already weird enough; trying to do it, and appear halfway normal, with a whisker - probably peanut butter flavored - dancing around inside my nose holes is a skill I just don't have. So...no narration.
That said, I cut some metal with a circular saw, it's a pretty self-explanatory deal. But, I learned some valuable lessons.
When I was making the initial cuts, I did those outside. It was like a full degree that day, and I was bundled up accordingly. I was impenetrable. When I made the final cuts indoors, I wasn't so bundled up. I had my sleeves pushed up to my elbows, and that was a mistake.
When the circular saw cuts the metal, it's not like the material chewed up by the 1/16" width saw blade just evaporates, it has to go somewhere. That somewhere is everywhere. A million little chunks of razor sharp, flaming hot metal shooting in, basically, all directions. Needless to say, the first indoor cut lasted all of about a second and a half before I sleeved myself and put on some gloves.
The other thing I learned was that cutting metal - and I sort of already knew this from my experience with cutting steel tube and angle - isn't like cutting wood in that you really can't count on being able to hold the workpiece with your hands while making a cut. That's a really, really bad idea. Like, scary stupid.
But I tried it.
Long story short...I got about halfway through an indoor cut before realizing that the piece of corrugated metal I was cutting had scooted to the right quite a bit and not only was I cutting through metal, but I was also cutting through my assembly table. With a circular saw with the blade on backwards (works well for cutting metal; wood, not so much). Good times.
After cleaning up - sanding, poly, etc. - the two pieces I needed, they turned out pretty well (I think). They've got kind of a leathery look. I'm still not sure if I'm going to like the final product or not, but after getting some things glued up today...it's growing on me.
Oh, and you get bonus points - you're going to be quizzed on my lessons-learned - if you can name the all-star employee of the company I'm proudly supporting with the t-shirt I'm wearing in the video.